Fact or fiction: Brushing your teeth with a strawberry and baking soda mix is a natural, cheap, do-it-yourself way to whiten your teeth. FICTION, according to a recent study. The safest and most effective teeth whitening method is a professional whitening kit.
In fact, any non-professional whitening method will be less effective, and could potentially damage your teeth. That’s because the chemicals in whitening formulas can exasperate an existing dental problem. If you’re trying to whiten your teeth, you need to turn to the professionals.
The Homemade Teeth Whitener Fallacy
For the study, researchers from the University of Iowa rubbed a mixture of baking soda and organic strawberries on 10 recently extracted human molars for five minutes, before gently brushing them. They repeated this process three times per day for 10 days, in accordance with the instructions given from people who touted this homemade remedy.
In the end, the teeth showed few real whitening improvements based on color-measurement tests. The mixture removed only superficial debris from the teeth.
Furthermore, the study found that the citric acid in the strawberry baking soda mixture actually reduced surface hardness of teeth by 10 percent. Not only does the method not whiten teeth, it damages them too.
Researchers also tested three other groups of molars with other teeth-whitening remedies – over-the-counter strips, prescription products and a procedure that replicated professional teeth whitening. The research showed that all of these methods produced markedly whiter teeth. Still, as we’ll show you, professional whitening is the most effective and safest method for whiter teeth.
Three Reasons for Professional Teeth Whitening-
If you’re going to whiten your teeth, it’s the American Dental Association’s recommendation (and ours) that you get them professionally whitened. Here are three reasons why:
1. Stronger whitening agents – Hydrogen peroxide and carbamide peroxide are the two chemicals needed to dramatically whiten teeth. Over-the-counter whitening strips contain much lower quantities of these ingredients than professional whitening kits, and therefore can’t whiten teeth to the same extent.
2. Ensures healthy teeth – It’s crucial to ensure your teeth are healthy before whitening them in any capacity. If your teeth have any decay or exposed root surfaces, they could be extremely sensitive to the chemicals in whitening products, whether professional or over-the-counter.
Throughout a professional whitening procedure, a dentist will monitor the progress and health of your teeth. They’ll check in with you after the first seven days, and then again after 14 days when the procedure is finished.
On top of monitoring the health of your teeth, professionals will also conduct a shade match to show you how much whiter your teeth become.
3. Evenly whitened – Almost every over-the-counter whitening product uses strips. However, these strips cannot cover the entire surface of every tooth evenly, and completely ignore the backs. This can result in blotchy whitening.
Contrarily, with professional whitening kits, a dentist will custom-fit a tray to your bite. Then, you fill the tray with a gel that covers the entire surface of every tooth. This results in much whiter looking teeth than if you were to whiten just the front.
A professional kit is the only way to safely, evenly and effectively whiten your teeth. As the study showed, homemade remedies don’t cut it, and can actually damage your teeth. If you’re serious about getting whiter teeth, go with the pros.
Click here to discover how to get whiter teeth from the comfort of your own home.